Ramen vending machine, anybody tried it?

Wondering how good (bad) they are…

In Japan, and now at the Metreon in SF.

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Lol, this makes me want to fly up to SF, just to try the ramen machine at the airport.

Interesting idea. However, I think it will be a small market though.

My first thought was college campuses, right next to the coffee machines.

I don’t know. When I was a postdoc, I walked by a new Little Caesar place, and it had this huge line. I mean like 1+ hour wait long line. Everyone was smiling and all happy. After inquiring what was going on, I found out that it was a promotion day for free pizza. Therefore, a free slice of pizza for more than an hour wait. Tons of college students here… I guess you know what I am trying to get to…

In general, I think college students have plenty time and not a lot of money – except those Ivy League colleges. This vending machine concept actually works the opposite manner. Not particular cheap, but very fast (45 seconds), so I think what you said about airport make sense. People in the airport do not want to wait for 30-45 min for a bowl of ramen and half of the time, their companies pay for the meal as travel expense.

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I’m curious as to how these machines will be restocked with the “fresh” ingredients needed for this ramen… will someone actually attend the machine daily to restock the fresh noodles/meat/produce that is needed? Or by fresh they mean it’s frozen or fresh and vacuum packed…? The logistics puzzle me.
And i dunno that college kids will want a fancy ramen if odds are there’s already a lot of instant ramen in their lives- i know when i was in college and decided to spend more than $2 on a meal i wanted something totally different from my day to day meals i made myself

11 dollars for a vending machine meal. I’m about ready to fall asleep. Did I read that correctly?

I wonder what temp these are served at. I need to read it again but those are my two questions :slight_smile:

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I am posting this video from Yo Kai here. It has only 633 view, but most likely this will jump quiet a bit after being posted here. :yum:

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That…does not make me want vending machine ramen.


This is a concept between a rock and a hard place.
People who want decent ramen will probably go to a restaurant and spend that $10-15.
People who want to save money and pure convenience will probably just buy a Cup O Noodle and add water for like$0.3-0.7.
This is a little in between. You want something better than Cup O Noodle and you want speed.


The vending machine version is $11, and thus does not offer substantial (or maybe any) savings over a restaurant.

This does not mean what you think it means. “Split the difference” is closer, I think.

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Agree. No saving. One reviewer did say that she likes this concept because she won’t have to talk to anyone.

“They claim it will take a total of 45 seconds to get your bowl but it’s a bit longer than that. But who cares since I am able to eat without talking to anyone!”

Apparently, I overlooked this “advantage”

Yeah, I get that. It’s why I prefer ordering food online, rather than by phone. Not because I hate talking to people (although sometimes I do), but because there’s less of a chance the person on the other end will misinterpret me.

I have an even faster solution for Andy Lin’s middle of the night hunger problem- someone make a ramen soylent and microwave it. You don’t even have to go to Metreon and SFO to get it. And you don’t have to find your wallet and pay before opening the microwave door or talk to your microwave either. Well maybe you do if the microwave is controlled by Alexa.

In fact, if the soup is provided (no powdered stuff, I mean liquid) and re-heatable, the meat and noodle refrigerated. I don’t see why not with microwave (or reheat with fire). Vegetables can be raw or cooked. Egg is complicated.

I was at the Metreon for a conference, saw the machine, had to check it out. You get two choices

  • Tonkatsu broth ramen with pork and veggies on it
  • Miso broth ramen with pork and veggies on it
    I’m vegetarian; so no sale here. Maybe they package the pork and veggie serving together and don’t have a way to serve without it, but nope.

(And for the “college student” suggestion, the stereotype about college students liking ramen is because it’s really really cheap and easy to cook, and while this isn’t outrageous, $11 is like paying for a restaurant lunch, not like paying 50c for a package of ramen at the store or $1 for the cup-o-noodles in the vending machine.)